Very early on in my blogging experience, I met some delightful young women through the weekly meme, Sunday Scribblings. All of them were "thirtysomething," so I fancied myself the venerable old lady of the group, chronologically at least. But in the past five years, I've discovered these young women have it all over me in the smarts department - at least in terms of being smart about themselves. In the five years since I "met" them, they've fashioned dramatic new creative lives. One of them has developed a successful online photography course, and is putting the finishing touches on her first book. Another has taken what was once a passing interest in photography and is turning it into an exciting business with a totally awesome concept. Yet another took her love for painting and animals and combined it to become an award winning pet portrait artist. All of these young women started out as seekers, posting their weekly scribblings about the various longings of their hearts, the hopes and wishes that seemed much too fantastical to ever come true. And yet, somehow they managed to make them come true, turn fantasy into reality, and engage their creative process as a means of livelihood. They aren't alone in their success either - the internet is rife with young creative thinkers, who have been able to take advantage of the opportunities new technology affords them.
As so often happens in my life, I find myself on the sidelines,
admiring coveting their achievement. Remember when you were in high school and desperately wanted to be part of that "cool" crowd? That's how I feel about all these wonderful artists and writers and creative entrepeneurs out there who are doing exciting new things with their lives.
I wonder what it is that holds me back from discovering and fulfilling my own creative dreams? It's partly insecurity of course. Everyone is afraid of rejection, of being deemed "not good enough" by the people they respect. It's partly about ignorance, not having the knowledge to even know what risks to take, not to mention the courage to take them.
But I think the biggest obstacle in making my creative dreams a reality lies in the actual definition of those dreams. In this recent post, Bella writes about the moment she found the direction she needed to take in her artistic life. Once she had that "aha!" moment (for her, a photograph she took at an arts workshop) she immediately felt "there was no time to stop and think about if I was good enough to do this - no - it was a full on hunger to begin the process.."
I can sit and ruminate all day about the things I'd like to do. I know what it is that makes me excited, and energized, and feeling as if I'm really something. How do I translate that into life in the real world, not necessarily monetarily (although that would be lovely), but in the sense of doing it everyday with purpose? How do I turn my love of words and music and communicating with other people through those arts into something that has a permanent place in my life?
Or is it nothing more than a pipe dream, one I should put to rest with the short skirts and fast cars of my youth?
In my travels through the internet, I've read a lot about people who put their intentions "out there" into the universe, rather like sending a message in a bottle onto the open sea. And so I lay bare these thoughts that swirl around inside my head, scribble them onto this metaphoric paper and set it afloat. Where will it wash ashore, and who will read the secret words written from my heart?
Who knows. But in this journey of seeking and longing, I'm open to anything.